The Cardinals announced that they have acquired left-hander Anthony Misiewicz from the Royals in exchange for cash considerations. The Royals had designated him for assignment recently when Zack Greinke’s signing was made official. The create room on their 40-man roster, the Cardinals designated right-hander James Naile for assignment.
Misiewicz, 28, was drafted by the Mariners and broke into the majors with them in 2020. He struck out 30.1% of batters faced in that debut but an elevated .367 batting average on balls in play nudged his ERA up to 4.05. That strikeout rate was higher than anything he had done in the minors and now seems to have been a small sample blip. In the past two seasons, which included getting dealt to the Royals at last year’s deadline, he’s struck out 22.4% of batters faced but walked just 7%, as he posted a 4.52 ERA over 98 appearances.
It’s possible that Misiewicz deserved better than that ERA would indicate. His .321 batting average on balls in play and 70% strand rate over the past couple of years are each a bit on the unfortunate side of average. ERA estimators like his 3.88 FIP and 3.77 SIERA paint a bit of a nicer picture. Like most southpaws, he’s better against left-handed hitters. For his career, he’s held them to a .250/.288/.361 line while righties have hit .283/.348/.480 against him.
The Cardinals figure to have Génesis Cabrera as their primary left-handed option out of their bullpen, with other options on the 40-man roster including Packy Naughton, JoJo Romero and Zack Thompson. All of those players, including Misiewicz, have options and may end up shuttling between Triple-A and the majors as the season progresses unless one of them can separate themselves from the rest of the pack.
As for Naile, this is a very ill-timed transaction for him as today is his 30th birthday. After spending many years in Oakland’s farm system, he reached free agency and signed a minor league deal with the Cards last year. He pitched well enough to crack the club’s roster in June, eventually posting an ERA of 5.00 over nine MLB innings. In 73 1/3 frames at Triple-A, he had a 3.31 ERA, 20.2% strikeout rate, 6.6% walk rate and 53.4% ground ball rate. That latter number is his best selling point as he’s run kept the ball on the ground all throughout his minor league career.
The Cards will now have one week to trade Naile or pass him through waivers. He still has a couple of option years and hardly any service time, which could intrigue clubs looking for some extra pitching depth. Roster spots are at a premium at this time of year but flexibility is about to go up with the return of the 60-day injured list next week.
Happy 30th birthday, James….
Cards Twitter: happy birthday James Naile!
Cards Twitter, 10 minutes later: James Naile has been designated for assignment.
Rough birthday present for James, I’d say
Hit the Naile on the head there
Competition for Packy Naughton.
See, doubters? I knew we would get our ace this off-season!
Sometimes you’re the hammer…..
At least he wasn’t on his honeymoon or at the hospital witnessing the birth of his first kid. That’s more of a Mets move.
Génesis Cabrera hasn’t been the Cardinals primary lefty since early last season. That’s why they keep adding lefties!
Zach Thompson is probably their most successful, but none of them should be considered “primary” just yet.
And that’s the Cardinals off-season, they Nailed it.
Wow good pickup ..”fart noise”
I was hoping Naile would be impressive enough in Spring Training to make the Cardinals 26 man roster. Many of the fans like him because he is a native of the State of Missouri, from Charleston, MO.